Kenya to take legal action against athletics boss

2016-08-08 21:56

Nairobi - The Kenyan anti-doping agency (ADAK) on Monday said it would open legal proceedings against their athletics manager Michael Rotich after allegations he sought a bribe in exchange for doping test information.

The Sunday Times newspaper and German television channel ARD filmed Rotich allegedly demanding 10,000 pounds ($13,000, 11,800 euros) for agreeing to give a warning when doping tests would be carried out.

ADAK chief Japhter Rugut described the accusations as "serious" and said the matter would be dealt with appropriately.

"The directorate of criminal investigations will follow the necessary due process to establish whether or not the individual has committed a crime as per the Kenyan criminal law (Anti-doping Act) and prosecute the matter in the courts accordingly," he said in a statement.

Rugut had previously announced on Sunday that his organisation would conduct their own inquiry. He then confirmed on Monday that Rotich had been recalled to Kenya after the allegations and that he had left the Olympic village.

Rotich had been filmed in January explaining to journalists posing as a coach and agent how their athletes could avoid doping controls.

He is also alleged to have promised to alert them 12 hours before a dope test in return for cash.

The allegations have dealt another blow to Kenyan athletics which had already been in the spotlight for alleged doping.

The criminal inquiry will be plausible through a new law, demanded by the World Anti-Doping Agency, which led to the formation of ADAK and which makes doping in Kenya a crime.

Under the new law, amended multiple times to satisfy WADA standards, athletes found guilty of doping can be sentenced to one year in prison. Any individual found to have distributed or given banned substances could face up to three years in jail.

On Sunday, Kenya's sport minister Hassan Wario had questionned the "veracity" of the Sunday Times and ARD report. He criticised the timing of its release, coming during the Olympics and considerable time after the events had been filmed.

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